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da da da da da da da da DA DA DA DA DA DA DA DA… That’s the sound of TL;DR Thursdays! Get it? It’s the theme song. It sounded better in my head. This week we had an interesting question regarding awkward conversations we’ve had in Korea! We mention a few of the very oddest conversations we’ve had in our video, but truthfully we surprisingly haven’t had that many awkward conversations. However, I’m quite sure we were the cause of awkward conversations with our Korean-English mash up.

I (Martina here) didn’t really think that much about how creative the English language actually was until I started to seriously learn Korean. It’s amazing how English can take any word and flip its meaning so quickly based on the context of the situation. For example, I can describe a good piece of cherry pie as “moving, beautiful, sparkling, pretty” and my friends will understand immediately what I mean. It’s not a literal description, but a feeling or representation of being happy with something. But when I tried to describe food as “pretty” in Korean, I was quickly corrected that food can’t be “pretty” that word is only used for people, clothing, or nature. There is pretty much only one way we have EVER heard food described in Korean, and that’s as “delicious” or “yummy” (mashisoyo or mashitda 맛있다) and super rarely I’ve heard “awesome” DAAAEEEEEEBAK (대박) from the younger crowd. Because of the fluidity of the English language we often use Korean words inappropriately to other Koreans, but it make sense to our English speaking mind. This has happened countless times, where I take an English phrase or description and attempt to use it in Korean conversation. Sometimes even a basic phrase or word can be completly misunderstood.

For example, when you want to get your food in a take out container, you say “pojang” (포장) but if you want to get your coffee in a paper cup, you should say “take out”. I didn’t know about this “takeout” phrase at first (silly me) so one time I had my latte accidentally served in a glass mug and when I asked for the latte to be “pojang”, they handed me a paper bag. I tried to point to my mug and mimic leaving the store but the guy just looked at me dumbfounded. I pointed at the paper cups and so he put a paper cup in my paper bag. -___-` I was totally floored that he couldn’t understand “pojang” as meaning takeout coffee. Luckily, a Korean person beside me understood and said to him, “takeout” which really sounds more like “taekowtu” in Korean. The barista was all like, “OHHHHH SHE MEANS TAKE OUT!” and he put my latte in a paper cup.

I learned that the English word takeout is now a Korean word, but most importantly I learned that not all Korean words were concepts that could be interchanged. I’ve run into this awkward communication moment several times, especially when asking for something “cold” by using the word chuweo 추워 which describes me feeling cold instead of the word chagaun 차가운 which can describe the temperature of my food. Maybe it’s because I grew up in a very multicultural Toronto which had people of all cultures with all levels of English that spoke with all types accents (including my very own Baka) that helped me to quickly understand someone’s intentions regardless of if they used the correct word. After working at a coffee shop I myself have heard coffee asked for as take out, to go, take away, in paper, for the car, in my hand, hand held, a tree cup (yup), and sometimes with no words and just a simple hand movement. I supposed Korea is still new to dealing with foreigners speaking their language with an accent or with broken Korean. Nonetheless, after these awkward moments in Korea, we usually share a little laugh at our awkward communication moment and I usually ask for a repeat of the word so I can get it right next time. Everyone is always more then happy to help me learn a new word, and when I comes to my Korean friends, they’re already mixing English and Korean together to form a new kindof language.

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  1. Simon and Martina, I need your input. So, this “are you Russian” question, happened to me and a friend of mine. The difference is, we’re guys. I feel a bit scarred now, listening to your explanation of what this phrase could mean in Korea, because, well, my episode occurred in a 사우나 while both my friend and I were stark naked. So, my friend and I climb out of the male baths, and as we’re drying ourselves, this Korean man, probably in his 50s is staring at us, for a good long 10 seconds or so and finally comes up to where we are. He gives my friend the elevator, slowly and deliberately and asks “Are you Russian?”…which he actually is, and then does the same to me, only when I reply “Canadian”, he rewards me with a nice friendly belly slap, not too far away from….private areas. Anyhow, I was horrified then, and am now even more worried…thanks for the nightmares, guys. Still love EYK, but I might sue you guys to pay for half of the therapy I will inevitably need now!

  2. I’m re-watching this videos and I was laughing my ass off at the hand gesture, not long ago one of my teachers from Spain, I’m Mexican asked the class what the hand gesture meant and we were all like well you you know *wink* hahaha and he was well that’s what it means to me too, but one of my friends seemed to think differently so I was wondering if in Mexico it meant something else, in the end it was only his friend who used it “incorrectly” xD

  3. I wish they would do a vid on Korean hip hop~drunken tiger,dok2, etc.~That’ll be cool

  4. oh my god lololololololololololololololololololol i’m a big fan of you guys and have been watching many of your videos(especially tldrs ;) ) but this one just tops it all lololololololololololololololol i laughed sooooooooooo hard lol. From now on i think i’ll also think of the gesture when I hear the word original lol. Face is uneven…what??!….as far as i know, there are no korean idioms that are even similar to this..um.. expression;;;;; no idea why the person said that to Martina :P maybe she thought Martina’s face was symmetrical and pretty? XD
    Also, really happy to find out you guys are in Bucheon!!! cause i live in Bucheon as well!

  5. Awww maybe the pervy old man was just hoping because you are so pretty!

  6. they play Bingo together, hhuh? anyone? BINGO? are you ready to bingo? cause im fricking ready to bingo!

  7. wow…..that experience that you mentioned Martina about an ajushii (sorry for spelling) not taking NO for an answer really hits home.  I’m a white female 30-aged American and I’ve been asked if I was Russian before, and at the time I was confused, and now I find it really offensive.  Seriously, just because I’m white and female, you think I’m a prostitute?  You’ve said it’s happened several times to you Martina…..my question for you is how do you deal??  Can you really just shake it off and go ‘oh Korea, you’re so silly’, or does it anger you?  

  8.  Never lost, but I did get in the car, drive to work and realize I forgot my pants.

  9. Dear Martina.
    This comment is totally irrelevant to this video (kinda). But I absolutely love your make-up and hair! the colours and everything are AWESOME!! 

  10. WHY the heck it’s “RUSSIAN saram”???
    I REALLY want to know coz I’m Russian actually and planning to come to S.Korea someday… and now I feel kinda… awkward? LOL

    • Traditionally, many Koreans thought of white women as being slutty or easy. Now, when Russian women began being briught over to work at juicy bars and “business clubs”, for some reason being Russian and a woman means that you are a prostitute or will easily sleep with someone.

      I’ve encountered this questions quite a few times and one time I was approach (on my way to the gym whilst wearing my parka) by a middle-aged men who straight up said to me, “Hey…I want sex. Okay?” Like seriously!!!???? WTF!?!?!…I think typically white women who have larger breasts have this problem more than other foreign women in Korea. It pisses me off for two reasons: 1) Not all Russians fit ghis incredibly stupid stereotype & 2)why do you think it’s ok to talk to a random woman like that?

  11. “Original” makes me think of Shindong.

  12. I want to live in Korea in the future, I studied my primary school years in the French school in Hanoi, Viet-Nam; currently doing my High School studies in Bankgok, Thailand; I want to go to Hong Kong for University and then to Korea for job! Will they give jobs for doctors who don’t speak Korean in Korea?

  13. QUESTION!!! – How do the restaurant/cafe workers/managers reply to you guys when you bring in the camera to film stuff? Do they object? Have you ever been denied from a restaurant because you were trying to film?

  14. Hi Guys,
    I wanted to know how you exactly  found out about korean culture and what made you want to teach in South Korea?
    Thanks 
    :3

  15. Hi Guys,
    I wanted to know how you exactly  found out about korean culture and what made you wanna teach over in South Korea?

  16. haha! no teacher! ORIGINAL!!! haha

  17. Im rolling over in tears for laughing so hard!

  18. I started watching your videos by chance when i started taking Taekwondo classes 3 weeks ago and Googled Korea. I am officially addicted! Your videos make me want to move to Korea!  

  19. hahahahaha i LOVE ur glasses martina “hello kitty” (^o^)

  20. i LOVE martina’s hello kitty glasses!!!! :O
    is it possible for me to get a pair? :)

  21. In Poland both gestures are used. The first one is for wanking, the second for making out ;)

  22. OMG! Martina! You look so cute with those glasses and that hairstyle ♥ BTW , Martina and Simon , this is my first time being on your site and it is really awesome ^^

  23. Uneven face: it is scientifically proven that ‘pretty’ people or good looking people have very even faces! As in the left is exactly like the right….when its not even…its not as beautiful”

  24. martina you shouldnt of said “naga” u shouldve said “kojo” which means PISS OFF or F**K OFF

  25. i think the whole even.uneven face thing is because, supposedly people are drawn to symmetrical things & are more likely to consider it aesthetically pleasing, where as it’s more difficult to “find the beauty” in something that’s say….lopsided, like a droopy eye or something. growing up my mom watched so many korean dramas & shows & like one of the big disses i remember is someone telling another they’re lopsided or unbalanced or…UNEVEN!
    O___O vs. o __ᄋ

  26. I WANT MORE OF THOSE AWKWARD MOMENTS BETWEEN WAEGUKINS AND KOREANS NAO! >< come on guise..you haven't made one since the Russian saram video…pweaase~

  27. I couldn’t stop laughing when Simon made that gesture talking about what his students told him another student did… I’m from Spain and here, that means that sexual thing gays do (I don’t know if I’m being clear). I don’t think that it means the same in Korea but.. I couldn’t stop laughing because you did it too many times guise… LOL-ing forever xD

  28. BTW, totally unrelated, but the Viva La Spudgy shirt is OOS when I tried purchasing it ): 

  29. Really good post! Loved the bit about the barista. :D

  30. I just have to say that I TOTALLY agree!! I’m now living in China as an exchange student and I’m actually really afraid of speaking Chinese because of the confusion it might cause… Also me and my host sister and my friends are now speaking English-Chinese. All the Chinese people on the metro or bus and things like that thinks it’s really funny, but at least I understand and it’s really funny because most people doesn’t understand what we are talking about. Even though I’ve now been an exchange student for more than 6 months my Chinese is terrible, but at least I can understand and make myself understood. Chinese people are at least really good with hand gestures (mostly)! Really love watching your videos but since I’m in China youtube is not allowed so I can’t watch all of them. Going home to Norway in three months and then I have a years worth of movies from you to watch! Keep going strong! Fighting! 加油! :)

  31. Martina and Simon~~sorry for this totally unrelated question… I really love all the effects you guys use in your videos, which software did you use?Thank you so much^^

  32. Loved the vlog(?) :D
    My dad yelled at me while I was watching it, because I’ve been wanting to ESL teach in Korea for a while now, and he’s saying that you guys are brainwashing me XD

  33. so has that whole ‘russian sanam’ thing happened to you a lot then? and is it quite common with other foreigners as well?

  34. oh my god I just totally lost it hahahhaha we Turks have the same hand gesture for that .. nasty stuff loooooooooool I can’t even hahahha

  35. hi there,
    actually i just wonder about something. simon and martina, are you married?

  36. I LOLed so hard at your ‘ORIGINAL’ hand motion guys, you crack me up! :D Oh and when are you doing a ‘Open the Happy’ about how to do that Count Dracula hair style Martina? Bad reference I know BUT you’ve worn that hair style in at least 3 videos now I wonder how you do it and where you go the idea from.

  37. so im a new fan and i just wanted to let you guys know that you guys seriously make my days! Like i honestly want to be your friend, u guys would be so awesome! Btw so is spudgy real???? or just the cartoon dog dragon thingy that humps everything???! Im confused!

  38. Many of those who have commented said that they learned that symmetrical faces are perceived as more beautiful, soothing to a child etc. That is quite funny because what I have heard about this topic is basically the opposite. If our faces were completely symmetrical; which they, of course, aren’t, nature just doesn’t work that way, humans’ perception is fallible; people would find us weird and boring looking.

    • If you get a photo manipulation that pictures a perfectly even face, the majority of people will get uneasy from looking at it. Apparent symmetry is desirable but no one is perfectly symmetrical, so it looks somewhat alien. Also, our brain is not used to perfect symmetry because it simply does not exist in nature, as you said.
      It also happens if you mirror a portrait of someone. They suddenly look “wrong” if you know them well. This actually explains why some people always find themselves weird/ugly in photos. They are used to their images in a mirror, so when they see themselves “the right way”, they unconsciously think that something is wrong. Their features are on the wrong side.

  39. If my students kept making ketchup bottle gestures, I guess I’d ask them “would you like fries with that?”

  40. yeh…..my face is uneven lol

  41. OMG I’ve loled so much with this TL;DR! This gesture the boys have made with their hands to Simon it’s common here in Brazil, so you’ve started doing it and I immediatly laughed so hard hahahahaha
    But about this “can’t use a different word” I understand what you mean… Actually, once I’ve done it with english (written), and the person was “??” hahaha these literal translations are so tricky :P This must be one of the many reasons why I’m ashamed of speaking in a foreign language (but I’m losing this fear :D)

  42. OMG I’ve loled so much with this TL;DR! This gesture the boys have made with their hands to Simon it’s common here in Brazil, so you’ve started doing it and I immediatly laughed so hard hahahahaha
    But about this “can’t use a different word” I understand what you mean… Actually, once I’ve done it with english (written), and the person was “??” hahaha these literal translations are so tricky :P This must be one of the many reasons why I’m ashamed of speaking in a foreign language (but I’m losing this fear :D)

  43. Back when you were a teacher? So what do you guys do now? 

  44. vaxanne

    Take comfort, a girl commented how she liked my face because it is asymmetrical. 

    Btw, here in Singapore both gestures depict s_ _.   

  45. Simon your awkward ‘original’ story reminds me of when i was teaching 6th grade in the US and i had to do a presentation about Greek Statues.  A lot of them were naked and we had to try and see what God or Goddess or myth the statue was representing.  It was awkward when about 15 boys and 14 girls are staring at a statue of Venus and I’m just like “Well we can tell its a woman … because…. she’s …. got … earrings …’  And then my teacher forgot to tell me there was a REALLY awkward slide where there was some … very interesting posing… shall we say … of two  men …  So i get to this slide and i just start verbally button smashing because i was not expecting this and i have no idea how I’m going to explain this to 6th grades and not feel like i’m giving a sex ed class.  The sad part was half the kids were just on the floor laughing, another group were just shielding their eyes like “EW BUTTS!!!!!” and then a small few were like “-cocks head to side- teacher?  I don’t get it.”  God, i don’t even remember how i explained that slide.

  46. Oh, crap. I’ve done that hand thing recently in class (I teach in Seoul) – I realized it makes a popping noise (Which changes when you add/take away fingers!), and I was entertaining myself/filling a transition… I don’t want to know what my students think of me now… *cringes*

  47. Oh, that hand gesture that the guys did? Yeah, that’s an Asian thing XD
    I live in Malaysia and I’ve always come across this gesture.
    Basically, I think this song represents it the best:

    I said a BANG, BANG, A BANGIDEE BANG,
    A BANG BANG BANGIDEE BANG.

    Yeah… Awkward. *whistles innocently*

  48. Hey, that hand gesture means that the girl gave him a hand-job or that his girlfriend was actually his own hand (I’m from Argentina, by the way), but I have no idea about the word “original” XD

  49. So Simon… are you sure your student wasn’t talking about his other girlfriend? e.g: His hand. 

    My boyfriend was watching his favorite Starcraft player (previously SlayersDragon… I dunno what team Dragon is on now though) and his fans were cracking up because he had tissues and huge bottle of lotion in view of the camera. It took forever for him to understand what they were laughing at but someone in Korean told him what was up and he said,”Ohhhh, like this???” He then proceeded to do the same exact movement that Simon made in this video. 

    Then he said,”NO! I no solo….!” :p 

  50. “your face’s like a rhombus”!!! *dies*

  51. the gurl who said “my face is uneven” probably was trying 2 complement u on ur
    V line =)

  52. THIS BLOG! THIS is my experience EXACTLY with learning Korean and also living in Korea in general. I find both things you’re talking aobut totally true for me as well. There have definitely been times I misused Korean words because, in English, that usage would be appropriate. Also, some of the most frustrating times I can think of in Korea are when I try to use Korean and because of either, my accent or my slight mispronunciation I cannnot be understood. Especially when it comes to the English/Korean words like “Takeout” and “Taxi” and “Menu”, etc. Also, I know many English speakers get frustrated when we use a word that was once English but we say it without a Korean accent and suddenly it’s indistinguishable to a Korean speaker. Not long after I moved to Korea, I was at a magkeolli restaurant with my friends. We were trying to order some side dishes and yogurt magkeolli. I said the ENTIRE order in Korean and everything was fine… until I got to the yogurt magkeolli. Even though I used Korean for everything else, I pronounced yogurt in English. Fast forward to the next 5 minutes where everyone at the table starts saying “yogurt” and the waiter is getting more and more confused, finally he brings over a menu and asks me to point to what I want. I point to the yogurt magkeolli and he says “OHHHHHH, yo-gur-tuh!!!!!”. I was mostly frustrated because I felt like he wasn’t even trying to understand what I was saying. Maybe it’s growing up more multicuturally like you said, but I think if someone came in pronouncing yogurt in a Korean accent, I would make the leap to “yogurt” if it was something on the menu… Anyway, I feel your frustration. However, it has made my Korean better. And it does provide those awesome cultural experiences!

    •  it’s because words like Yogurt have been brought to Korea from other countries ages ago and the pronunciation has been influenced by how the people in the old days used to say it. Yo-goo-reu-teu or Yo-geo-teu is how the people would say Yoghurt/Yogurt in Korea. and I think for foreigners, practicing how to say the eu sound is very important since that’s what Koreans use the most for Konglishing (or Koreanizing per say) Foreign sounds. One mistake foreigners use a lot is that they presume Koreans talk like Japanese and put a lot of “oo” or they say “uh.” (like Stevens would be “seu-tee-beun-jeu” when pronounced in Korea, not Soo-tee-boon-joo like most foreigners think Koreans might say)

    • Huh, not to rain on your parade, but yogurt isn’t a english word! Is a turkish word that meant dense, coagulated. I think yogurt is yogurt almost everywhere, but each language has its pronunciation! It is more likely that the word arrived in Korea first, since the Russians have the product for centuries… I don’t know. But yogurt arrived in America only in 1920′.

    • irritablevowel

      This happens in English too.  Think of how we say Los Angeles, Detroit, and University of Notre Dame.  Las An-je-lez instead of Los Ahn-he-les.  Dee-troy-t instead of Deh-twah, Nor-ter Daym instead of No-truh Dahm.  I do agree that English speakers tend to understand a word if it’s in the same ballpark though.  It’s when it sounds really different that there is confusion.  Like if someone from France kept telling me they had been to Deh-twah, it might take me a while to realize they meant Dee-troy-t because I’m not used to hearing it that way.

      • So true. I’m on exchange and when I first met my French roommate, we got into a discussion about where she had been in Canada, which is where I’m from. She totally threw me for a loop when she told me she had gone to Mon-ri-al (Montreal) and loved it. We had like five minutes of confusion after I told her that I had no idea where that was and she kept insisting it was a major city in Canada. Quebecers probably pronounce it the same way she does, but where I’m from we pronounce it Mun-tree-all.

  53. OMGGG!! Where did you get ur glasses?? I saw Bubz has a pair too!!

  54. irritablevowel

    Simon’s former students seemed to love to get a reaction from him!  That gesture makes me think of a ketchup bottle too.  

  55. I have the same problem about being asked if I’m Russian in Japan.  Like guys will come up to me and put their arms around me and physically try to take my places and say really disgusting things.  Really freaking annoying when you factor in the Japanese culture part of “Oh, I don’t see this problem you are having…”

    I think it’s because a lot of Russian girls are brought over (perhaps against their will or are tricked into it) to work in what’s called the “Water Trade” – hostess clubs and the like.  So when these types of guys see any white girl they HOPE she has that profession.  Be careful walking around certain areas of Shinjuku in Tokyo; that’s where the red light district is and not only do you get a bunch of creeps hitting on you, you also have the police bothering you for your passport/alien registration because they’re trying to hunt down illegal immigrants :(

  56. hmm very interesting lol this makes me want to learn the language even more!!!

  57. so some korean men think all whites are russian? why?

  58. I’ve always heard that a face that is more symmetric is appealing to the eye and considered beautiful, which is probably what she meant…not sure why she greeted you with that though haha

  59. Okay, they keep saying, “when I was still teaching” on different occasions. Are they no longer teaching? What do they do now?

  60. LOL you should have said “Ggeo-jeo!!!!!” to the old man who asked if you were Russian.. 꺼져 basically means “get lost”, an expression to use to someone who is being a complete douche-bag.

  61. omg I had same situation at Sturbucks in Seoul some guy approached me and asked me bazillion times if I’m Russian and even after I explained to him also bazillion times that I’m not he followed me after I went out and kept speaking Korean-Russian for several minutes, good thing it was in the middle of the day and it was crowded on the streets so I managed to lost him, perverted ahjussi

  62. Where did you get those Hello Kitty glasses? I love them. I told my husband that I wanted those Hello Kitty glasses and he asked how I knew they were HK glasses, I said duh babe, they have whiskers and a trademark bow on the right side. Now that I think about it, how come Mimi never gets the attention? Hello Kitty is the good twin I guess.

  63. in korean, even is litterally translated as ‘고르다’, which can also mean
    pretty and beautiful when it is about a person’s face. So opposite of
    that is uneven, so she must have meant that she wans’t pretty. But i
    don’t know why that just came up when you were in the cafeteria LOL…

    • I doubt that, I’m a native Korean speaker like you but I’ve never seen someone use ‘고르다’ as ‘pretty’ in any case but  ‘my teeth are well-arranged 내 이빨은 고르다’. I think, considering her hand gesture, what she meant was “내 얼굴은 짝짝이에요” which means one half side of her face is different from the other side. 짝짝이 is a slang meaning ‘symmetry’. Being a native Korean speaker I totally understand why she used the word ‘uneven’, I would have said exactly like her too lol

  64. Simon and Martina, How And when Did you guys first meet Spudgy?

  65. As a female who IS actually Russian, when I go to Korea, I will stay clear of any one who could possibly imply that I am a prostitute. But my question is why are Russian women considered prostitutes there? As far as I know, South Korea doesn’t have a history of Russian women prostituting themselves there. This requires more research…..
    (Maybe it is like in America, where we are considered spies or something because of Cold War tensions that got stereotyped and immortalized in pop culture?)

    •  well there hasn’t been a history.. but it has been a recent phenomena (not sure if that word is even appropriate). it has nothing to do with anything historical.

    • I know not all Rusian girls in Korea are prostitutes, but specially in the southern city of Pusan (also spelled Busan) there are hundreds of Russian prostitutes offering their services in the streets near the Pusan (train) station, so that might be the reason why Korean thinks that.

  66. Not sure about an idiom, but I read an article about symmetry in faces before.  It’s basically about beauty; it’s perceived that the more symmetrical your face (or anything else) is, the more “beautiful” you are (it is)…most things in nature are symmetrical (flowers, leaves..etc).  I also read that babies respond more to even than uneven faces..but idk?

  67. ORIGINEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  68. there’s a typo in the blog part. it says “more then happy” should be more than happy… idk that was bugging me. 

  69. Besides teaching, you’ve also experienced other work in Korea? This is news to us! Was this during or after teaching, or do you still work there now?

  70. LOL at the uneven face part.. that’s totally awkward..

  71. Love your glasses!! Where did you get them??

  72. i am nigerian but live in turkey. so that hand gesture means *fudge you* in turkey but in nigeria it can be used as an equivalent for ”a lot” in conversations like when you are trying to say there is so much of something. it took me a long time to remember to not do that in public and i still do forget sometimes. needless to say i have had a few awkward experiences.

    • yes it means that here XD IMy mom was at the room when Simon did all that and I was like “what should I do they shouldn’t see” XD hahahaha
      And its hard to be in your situation too . Good luck =)

  73. Uneven? Don’t they mean asymmetrical? 

  74. Hi Simon and Martina,
    I think you should clarify the context of the question of russian. This might be due to the organized crime that traffics russian women into Korea plus the media reports of it. I don’t know how extensive it is but I’m suspect the media reports. 

    • ? as far as I know, there have been no media reports of trafficking of Russian women specifically in Korea. honestly I think those women come to Korea via agencies in their own home country (like South East Asian women do to become mail-ordered brides in Korea – which has been covered by the media) or on their own….Russians come to Korea to find their own employment.. and it is very sad but there are a lot of foreign women (mainly non-english speakers) who enter into prostitution business when they get into Korea.

    • i agree.. imho, it’s kinda touchy topic, I get what S&M means because unfortunately this stereotyping russian people thing also happen in other asian country too.. (i’m just giving my opinion, not accusing, please no bashing) and i don’t think it’s only because the media reports but also these type of news are likely to went  viral which means the public do contribute as well.. :(

  75. I think it’s due to the fact that you guys don’t know the Korean language very well.. For Koreans, food is a practical thing. Unless it was made to look “pretty” (for special occasions or if it was desert), most ppl wouldn’t say it is pretty. They do say “well-made” or “cute/pretty” though… maybe they thought you guys didn’t know how to say delicious..
    and pojang is used only if the food isn’t in a “container..” and coffee is already held by a cup per say… pojang doesn’t work like that. it works for putting things in boxes. if you say “i’m taking it outside” or “ssaganda” (take it out) then ppl would have had better time understanding.
    It’s also because that kind of service wasn’t really offered in Korea so they don’t have vocabs for it. (most koreans eat everything at the restaurant and don’t take it home or outside like coffee)
    Korean can be a bit more straightforward than English just because there are a lot of “presumptions” about how a person can say things due to hierarchy or stuff like that. English is a bit opposite. That’s why I think ppl can get away in english speaking countries with pretty poor grammar or accent…(which is a bad way to improve their English.. I know because I’ve had ppl with poor english skills living in Canada for years who felt they didn’t need to improve their ENglish because they got along fine conversing and living in an all canadian neighborhood)
    good TLDR as usual guys :)

    • I also think Korean hierarchy stuff makes it easier, not harder. In other languages, there are no set rules so you have to just know how to speak to others without sounding rude or sarcastic.

  76. OMG the article is sooo funny … so takeout is only used for coffee lol,
    thank you for this article, I always learn new stuff about korea with you guys
    gonna watch the video now :)

  77. Oh guys, thanks for making my morning so much better! My lovely husband who is in charge of the alarm clock accidentally got me up at 4:30 in the freakin morning, which I only realized after I was entirely showered and ready to go. I decided not to try to sleep but to stay awake until I needed to leave but whatever shall I do with this time?! Can’t check EYK because I just watched the Japan video last night which means there will be nothing new less than 24 hours later…BUT WAIT! And it was my fav, TLDR, and it was hilarious! Huzzah

  78. ok I am at my internship in my cubical on my lunch break holding my mouth and trying not to laugh out loud.. i was hysterical !! ORRIIGGIINNAAALLLL!!! omg seriously so funny.. 

  79.  Simon, in Brazil we have the same hand gesture

    •  whoa, wait, what part of Brazil are u from? I lived in the south (Santa Caterina) for a year, and the gesture was similar but instead you would hit the back of your hand, not the side. Still was awkward for me to learn what it meant, and then have my Brazilian friends ask me if I had done it T__T  at first I also confused this gesture with the ‘whatever’ one which was…. embarressing >.<

      • Pretty much everywhere in Brazil this gesture means the same… It’s because of the noise ‘of flesh slaping flesh’.

        Good to know that I would have understood the gesture if I was in Korea :p

    • It doesn’t mean “sex” but yeah, we have the same gesture rsrs

  80. I think Simon that your students were referring to the sound that sex makes haha

  81. punkyprincess92

    you should have said “Jugulae????!!!” to the old guy!
    in another video you guys totally got trolled by students!!!! and now again Simon!!!!!! ahahaha!!
    oh my gosh i’m just sitting here and watching this video with my eyes squinting and my face all screwed cos it’s just so embarrassing to watch!!!
    Super Junior Shindong in acha “i’m original!”
    and just like all of us here and you guys……I’M SO CURIOUS YEAH~…..what does my face is uneven even mean? (SHINee reference had to be done!!!! i love them and they’re back!!!)

  82. I’ve heard about the uneven face thing. They say that people with face that are symmetrical are good looking. That’s what they say but there is not scientific proof or anything to substantiate that.  But yea that’s what the principal probably meant :)

  83. try saying “hi! your face is uneven” with the rithm of  “wow, fantastic baby” FITS PERFECTLY

    •  Almost. There’s 1 extra syllable in “Hi! Your face is uneven” vs “Wow, Fantastic Baby.”

      Hi Your Face Is Un-Ev-En = 7 syllables
      Wow Fan-Tas-Tic Ba-By = 6 syllables

      • Try omitting the “is” part because it gets mixed with the end of face, and it fits perfectly XD

        •  No, it still wouldn’t work. xP Mixing the “is” with the end of “face” would make it sound like “faces” (face’s), thus it becomes Hi Your Face-is (‘s) Un-Ev-En, still 7 syllables. The only way this would work is by taking out the “Hi” to drop it down to 6 syllables, but with the rhythm of Fantastic Baby, it would give “Your, face’s uneven.”

          Not to be a rhythm nazi, but that’s not what I call “perfect”.

        • “WOW. Your face is even.”  6 syllables.

        • What about omitting the “is” not because it gets mixed with the end of face, but because the word “is” is often omitted in Konglish so it fits the theme? XD

  84. wow, those glasses are KICKASS!!

  85. It’s okay Simon-oppa, my face is uneven too. :(

  86. LOL that was actually interesting. And yes I can relate since I also have tons of Korean friends and sometimes meaning gets taken out of context or the meaning gets all mixed up. But so awesome that both of you are adjusting pretty well :) 

  87. MARTINA I WANT YOUR GLASSES!!! Did you buy them in Japan??

  88. it’s like singlishhhhhhhhhhh

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